Date of Award
College of Fine Arts
Type of Degree
Clarinetist and band leader Benny Goodman was born in the Chicago slums in 1909. He first played in dance bands and eventually organized his own band, which became so popular that he was known as the "King of Swing." As a clarinetist, he also was attracted to classical music, particularly the clarinet music of Mozart, Debussy and Brahms. Gunther Schuller, describing Goodman's ability to play in both jazz and classical styles said, "In a sense, Benny was the first Third Stream musician, moving easily in and out of jazz and classical music, from the Palomar Ballroom to Carnegie Hall..." 1 This paper explores Goodman's musical career in both the classical and jazz worlds, defines the term “Third Stream” and describes how Benny Goodman fits this term. Selected works Goodman explored as a classical clarinetist as well as some of the music written for and commissioned by him are discussed in detail.
Goodman, Benny, 1909-1986.
Bull, Jae Ellis, "Benny Goodman : From “King of Swing” to Third Stream" (2006). Theses, Dissertations and Capstones. 517.